Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Teaching Writing in Kindergarten?

The first day of school is right around the corner, and our youngest learners in kindergarten, are coming, ready or not! As I think about the kids that left me in May, it's hard to believe I will be starting completely over with 20 very young, innocent kindergartners...babies.

 Kindergarten writing is all about nudging, with a gentle push, and building on a relationship of support and trust. Launching a successful writer's workshop means embracing the innocence of our youngest writers and propelling them further than ever thought before.
Teaching writing in kindergarten is all about nudging, with a gentle push, and building on a relationship of support and trust. Launching a successful writer's workshop means embracing the innocence of our youngest writers and propelling them further than ever thought possible.

How can we do this without tears?

How can we do this AND teach the love of writing?

How can we do this without going cRaZy!?!?!

We can. The trick is to not expect it to happen overnight. We MUST start slow, to go fast. Later.

It begins with teaching just a few minutes a day, building on our student's known language, talking. Our students came from the womb recognizing that oral language gets attention! This is Phase 1...we tell stories! Lots of stories. We get to know each other, we learn how to listen, how to speak to our friends, how to entertain each other with stories from our lives.

From there, we take our oral stories to paper by drawing pictures from our lives and telling stories around them. We build our language, our vocabularies, our confidence. We teach writer's craft through read alouds and try out writing techniques by imitating mentor texts. Phase 2 teaches us to notice details in pictures so that we can later notice and add details in our writing.

Finally, after all of the groundwork has been set, we introduce writing. Phase 3. 3. 3. This is usually Phase 1 for many teachers and students, but should it be? It can't be. Not for our youngest writers. We have to build up to this so that when the time happens, our writers are eating out of our hands. Sound too good to be true? It's not. And it can be reality in your kindergarten classroom, too. Teach our babies well!

Good luck, fellow writing teachers! You can do this!
 3 Logical Phases to SUPER KINDER Writers!


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